Powers of Two: How Relationships Drive Creativity

  • 11h 18m 32s
  • Joshua Wolf Shenk
  • Recorded Books, Inc.
  • 2014

Lennon and McCartney, Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak, Pierre and Marie Curie. Throughout history, partners have buoyed each other to better work — though often one member is little known to the general public. (See Warren Buffett and Charlie Munger, or Vincent and Theo van Gogh.) In Powers of Two, Joshua Wolf Shenk draws on neuroscience, social psychology, and cultural history to present the social foundations of creativity, with the pair as its primary embodiment. Revealing the six essential stages through which creative intimacy unfolds, Shenk shows how pairs begin to talk, think, and even look like each other; how the most successful ones thrive on conflict; and why some cease to work together while others carry on. At once intuitive and deeply surprising, Powers of Two will reshape the way you view individuals, relationships, and society itself.

In this Audiobook

  • 1. “You Remind Me of Charlie Munger”: Matchups and Magnet Places
  • 2. Identical Twins from the Ends of the Earth: The Convergence of Homophily and Heterophily
  • 3. “Like Two Young Bear Cubs”: The Varieties of Electric Experience
  • 4. Presence → Confidence → Trust: The Stages of Confluence
  • 5. The Turn of Faith: The Final Stage
  • 6. “Everybody Just Get the Fuck Out”: The Psychology of “We”
  • 7. “No Power in Heaven, Hell or Earth”: Creative Marriage
  • 8. In the Spotlight (in the Shadows): The Star and the Director
  • 9. Jokestein and Structureberg: The Liquid and the Container
  • 10. Inspiration and Perspiration: The Dreamer and the Doer
  • 11. Turn-Taking: Generators and Resonators
  • 12. “Everything's the Oppsite”: The Psychology of Dialectics
  • 13. The “Other” of the Psyche: The Dialogue of Creative Thinking
  • 14. Creative Monks and Siamese Twins: The Extremes of Distance
  • 15. “Somehow We Also Kept Surprising Each Other”: The Varieties of Distance
  • 16. “Desire for That Which Is Missing: The Erotics of Distance
  • 17. My Most Intimate Enemy: Creative Foils
  • 18. Luke Skywalker and Han Solo: Creative Pairs and Coopetition
  • 19. “We All Want the Hand”: Power Clarity and Power Fluidity
  • 20. “I Love to Scrap with Orv”: Conflict
  • 21. Varieties of Alphas and Betas: The Hitchcock Paradox
  • 22. “What About McCartney-Lennon?”: The Dance of Power
  • 23. “Listen, This Is Too Crazy…”: Stumbles
  • 24. The Paradox of Success: Wedges
  • 25. Failure to Repair: Why Did Lennon-McCartney Split?
  • 26. The Never Endings: Did Lennon-McCartney Ever Split?


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